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Gordon Young
Editor-in-chief at The Drum

How Eve Sleep and Channel 4 created a ‘night mode’ ad break to inspire rest

To mark World Sleep Day this weekend, Channel 4 and Eve Sleep have compiled a distinctive ad break designed to relax viewers with a 'sleep mode' filter. Adam Denton, a creative strategist at the broadcaster explained how unexpected advertising can drive better results on TV.

This Sunday at 9.45pm (15 March), the broadcaster will apply a ‘sleep mode’ filter (as seen on mobile phones) to TV adverts on Channel 4, E4 and More4. With help from planner Goodstuff, Eve Sleep's idents and ad spots from Calpol, Cazoo, Listerine, The AA and Velux, boast an amber filter to offset disrupting stimulation from blue lights.

Eve Sleep's idents show adults, a young child, a baby and a puppy enjoying a good nap, hoping to inspire the same in viewers.

On helping to create the campaign, Denton said: "Our research tells us that when viewers see something that’s unexpected, they’re more likely to recall the ad. These expectations can be changed in numerous ways, from visual or audio effects in the case of this campaign, to seeing talent or programming references outside of their common (expected) environments. However, a by-product of this is that the brand itself can sometimes be lost and forgotten among the viewers' new experience, so clear branding is a crucial element. This will hopefully come through strongly within this campaign."

The work goes above and beyond a standard ad spot. Denton was quizzed on the 'brave' campaign, a term it turns out, he wasn't quick to embrace.

"Bravery is always subjective and what it means to one client and brand can differ immensely to another. It is also important to distinguish between bravery and stand out as they’re not necessarily the same."

Ideally, Denton and the team look to build experiences that 'stand out' from the creative norms of brands and their categories; whether that's a Lego ad break or a claymation masterclass to generate buzz around Shaun the Sheep.

PL4Y, the broadcaster's in-house creative strategy, "provides a culture that encourages creative thinking and collaboration". He said: "This leads to more efficient processes as we’re all aligned to the central vision of producing the best creative work possible. Media agencies trust us because of our pedigree in delivering highly creative campaigns.

"We talk about the sea of sameness and try to build our partnerships around being disruptive and engaging. If your expectations are exceeded then you’re likely to have a stronger affiliation to a brand and remember it more. We try to use creativity within our brand partnerships to help give our audience an entertaining experience."

Meanwhile, Cheryl Calverley, chief marketing officer of Eve Sleep, explained how the work forms part of the brand’s wider ‘Right to Sleep’ campaign. It is positioning as a ‘sleep wellness’ company, rather than a mattress producer, and is campaigning for the UK government to recognise sleep under the Human Rights Act 1998 with a petition.

Calverly said: “There’s lots and lots of things that disrupt sleep, leaving the nation feeling groggy and not at their best each morning, and here at Eve Sleep we are on a mission to solve them all one by one.

“So as part of World Sleep day this year, we hope to help millions of Channel 4 viewers get the sleep they need to rise and shine. What better way than with a TV ad break free of sleep-disrupting blue light, supported by simple and effective sleep tips, and then a relaxing moment of calm.”

The creative was developed by Sassy Films.

Vote for the campaign in The Drum's Creative Works below.

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